Amber Housley

Welcome Kayla Grace

saraerose-photo

The details and story:

Our sweet little girl arrived into the world on December 28th! My best friend and photographer Sara Rose was there to capture her birth story. You can read some of the story and see highlights at her blog post here: http://www.saraerosephotographyblog.com/2014/01/this-is-the-day-you-were-born/

I love the lyrics of the song “Always” by Switchfoot Sara chose to use in our personal slideshow. They are so perfect and meaningful:

This is the start, this is your heart
This is the day you were born
This is the sun, these are your lungs
This is the day you were born

Hallelujah, I’m caving in
Hallelujah, I’m in love again
Hallelujah, I’m a wretched man
Hallelujah, every breath is a second chance

And it is always yours
And I am always yours 

We were happily surprised back in May when we found out about her arrival. Our special announcement was made here. Fast forward seven months later and we can’t imagine life without her in it!

Her name:

We went back and forth on her name as she grew in my belly, but I always really loved the name Kayla. It was short and sweet and I loved the many meanings of it: Pure, Beloved and Rejoice. On the way home from a trip to the beach this Fall, we finally decided to make a decision – and her big brother cast the deciding vote of Kayla. Grace just seemed like a perfect fit with it. Her name is a perfect fit for how her birth story came to be.

Thank you!

Thank you friends for all the wishes you have sent our way! What an amazing way to start the new year.

Special News

Things have been a little quiet around here on the blog since my return from my whirlwind trip to New York City last month! Mostly it’s because things have been anything but quiet around here.

A fun little surprise made it’s presence known my very last day in NYC…

 

Amber Housley Blog Birth Announcement Sweet Little Peach

(special thanks to my amazing best friend Sara Rose for these family photos)

And just like that, our life has changed, and our little family of three is SO EXCITED to become a party of four…

Amber Housley Nashville Wedding Planner Designer Invitations

Amber Housley Blog Invitation Designer Wedding Planner

I’ve shared openly with close friends, and even at Making Things Happen, my own personal struggle with deciding when the right time was to have baby #2. It’s something I was on the fence about for almost three years now. I juggle so many things right now in my life that adding another little one was something that scared me. Something that I even thought might hold me back from opportunities or goals. Even harder was seeing so many close friends struggle with infertility and I had a combination of both guilt and fear because having Colin was so easy and now could be something I was taking for granted, or I could face the same issues myself in the future.

Along the way at Making Things Happen, I decided that my future did in fact include an addition to our family and that God wasn’t going to give me anymore than I could handle. Somehow I would find a way to make our crazy life work. I know that this little one is going to be a blessing in our lives and was something we’d start trying for later this summer or fall.

And just like that, God’s timing is always more perfect than my own.

I like to think He nodded His head that day in March and said, “I’m glad we’re on the same page now. Now, let me get back to the great plans I have for you…”

Amber Housley Nashville Wedding Planners Designers Invitations

Fast-forward to my last day in NYC when I’m feeling sort of faint in the hot sun and start complaining alongside one of my roommates how smelly an outdoor market is…a test later that afternoon confirmed something that had never even crossed my mind. What a fun souvenir to bring home to my husband!

The first trimester is now over and has been really great. I can’t really complain when I only had knowledge of this little peach for about four weeks now. That is a blessing in itself since I was definitely sick with Colin. This pregnancy is already feeling different in so many ways.

The facts right now: I’m craving lots of fresh Georgia peaches, watermelon, salads and frozen yogurt. I fall asleep at 8:30pm and I’m getting ready to purge a lot of clutter in the house. Let the nesting begin! :)

Thanks for sharing in the next chapter of our family. XO

 

Making Things Happen Conference Recap & Thank You

Making Things Happen Conference by Lara Casey

I’m still coming down from my wonderful Making Things Happen conference experience in Chapel Hill last week.

At the end of the conference, while we were enjoying sweet tea and biscuits (a perfect ending to a wonderful 2 days!), so many wonderful people came up with hugs and gratitude. All I can think of is saying thank you right back to all of them for helping me feel so comfortable to be honest and do the real work too.

There is something to be said for working two solid days on the heart of you – both personally and professionally. I can’t thank Lara, Emily and Gina enough for the invitation to join them.

I think we have a tendency to believe that those who host or speak at workshops have it all figured it out when really, we don’t have all the magic answers. We too are a work in progress each and every day and have our own sets of insecurities and big plans we still want to make happen. I came to discover some of my own struggles I’ve been keeping down deep and feel like I’ve gained some new clarity.

Half way through Day 1 I took a short walk outside to get some air and I literally asked God why I was there. What was my purpose? Why did he bring me here? I don’t think I have all the answers to that but I know that sharing my story and my business journey brings me great joy and satisfaction. I’d like to think a little piece of me left with each of the attendees to help fire them up in some way.

Looking back, I believe I drove home the idea to ‘own who you are’.

You can’t wait around waiting for someone else to give you permission to be what you want to be. You have to claim it.

It’s even a nice reminder to myself to really own the talents and life I was given…and to run with it.

I can’t wait to see what those 100+ men and women claim for themselves in the next 6 months! I’ll be cheering on everyone each step of the way!

Making Things Happen Conference Recap

On a final note, I’m also thankful for getting to know many of the wonderful women who are the other speakers and those who worked behind the scenes to help produce such an amazing conference. I’m reminded again how wonderful it can be when creatives get together to really rally around and support others. That’s exactly the way it should be.

On Turning 32 and Life Right Now

 

Last night, we left the kiddo with the in-laws and raced to Cheesecake Factory for  a late-night dinner. As any festive gal would on her birthday, I ordered a half-split of champagne. It felt very glamourous. I toasted to a wonderful 32 years and blew the candle out on my pumpkin-pecan cheesecake.

 amber housley blog birthday

Not so glamorous was how fast I inhaled that cheesecake.

 

Birthdays are a time of happiness, but also of reflection. I tend to over-think things and this week was like no other. Time spent wasted on thoughts and feelings and insecurities with growing older when they should have been spent more on gratitude and blessings. Thankfully, I have such a wonderful little tribe of friends who swoop in at just the right moment to say just the right things to make me feel whole again and my 32nd birthday was a sunshine filled day full of simple, pleasurable moments and time spent focusing on just me.

Did I mention how a mid-day facial and a hair blowout can work miracles, y’all? It’s so true. Everyone should be so selfish on their birthday! ;)

Now for the part where I get deep thinking…

Lately, this quote from the movie Michael has been coming to mind – “everyone is on their way to something else…”

I work in an industry of life’s celebrations…people are married, little babies are born, birthdays are celebrated. A constant stream of milestones big and small, fleeting moments in time before we are on our way to the next chapter.

Even during the simplest and normal of days, I find myself catching a moment with Colin or as a family and I feel like I’m in a movie. A little old-fashioned film-strip and I want to press pause and not forget how great the moment feels before we move to the next scene.

Which is why I love this Right Now Challenge Kristina has posted on her blog. Life’s little moments captured simply each week. Instagram has done a good job of capturing the moments and now I have a few more notes that will help preserve it even further. I’m going to do my best to keep up with it each week.

 

Right now…

1. Colin loves requesting eskimo kisses and is becoming even more loving (dare I jinx it by saying growing to be ‘mama’s boy’) each and every day. I’m basking in the warmth of it.

2. Thankful for mid-day lunch ichats and technology that brings long-distance friends closer to home.

 

3. The leaves are starting to change, the temperature has been perfect, and I love driving with my windows down.

4. I’m looking forward to (finally after years of wanting to) crafting a December Daily album this year to preserve our holiday memories. I pre-ordered the materials this week and I can’t wait to set aside some long overdue craft time.

 dahlia dinnerplate fall

5. Dahlias in the backyard have made one last appearance and they were bigger and more beautiful than in year’s past.

 

6. I finished cleaning up the garden and after many lessons learned my first year, already excited about possibilities for next. Looking to possibly planing a few fall vegetables as well in the next week.

7. Received this article from Sara. Every mama could relate to that one. Vowing to get in the picture more.

 

This week I had every intention of launching the Sweet Tea & Lemonade online store but as with all labor’s of love, this one is cooking a little longer to get everything perfect and even more fabulous than I had originally intended. I appreciate all your notes of support and excitement you’ve sent! I can’t wait to share it with you all very, very soon!